Mochlus fernandi (BURTON, 1836)
Can you confirm these amateur observations of Mochlus fernandi?
|Higher Taxa||Scincidae, Lygosominae, Scincoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)|
|Subspecies||Mochlus fernandi fernandi (BURTON 1836)|
Mochlus fernandi harlani (HALLOWELL 1845)
|Common Names||G: Prachtskink, Feuerskink, Feuerbauchskink|
|Synonym||Tiliqua fernandi BURTON 1836|
Tiliqua nigriceps — KRAMER 1979: 164 (in error for nigripes)
Lygosoma fernandi – BOULENGER 1887: 304
Lepidothyris fernandi — COPE 1892: 233
Lygosoma nov. sp. BARBOZA DU BOCAGE 1895: 272
Lygosoma fernandi – BARBOZA DU BOCAGE 1895: 12
Ligosoma fernandi – BARBOZA DU BOCAGE 1903: 41
Lygosoma fernandi – BOULENGER 1906: 206
Lygosoma ferrandi — WERNER 1913: 19 (in error)
Lygosoma fernandi — SCHMIDT 1919: 558
Lygosoma ferrandi — LOVERIDGE 1920: 157 (in error)
Riopa fernandi — LOVERIDGE 1936: 71
Riopa fernandi – MERTENS 1941: 278
Mochlus fernandi – MITTLEMAN 1952: 9
Lygosoma fernandi — BROADLEY 1998
Mochlus fernandi — SCHMITZ et al. 2000
Lygosoma fernandi — REEDER 2003
Lygosoma fernandi — PAUWELS et al. 2004
Mochlus fernandi — VELTUM 2005
Lygosoma fernandi — PAUWELS et al. 2006
Lygosoma fernandi — JACKSON et al. 2007
Lepidothyris fernandi fernandi — WAGNER et al. 2009
Lepidothyris fernandi — BÖHME 2014: 156
Mochlus fernandi — FREITAS et al. 2019
Mochlus fernandi harlani (HALLOWELL 1845)
Plestiodon harlani HALLOWELL 1845: 170
Euprepis harlani — HALLOWELL 1857: 75
Tiliqua nigripes MÜLLER 1885: 704
Lepidothyris fernandi harlani — WAGNER et al. 2009
Lepidothyris fernandi harlani — TRAPE, CHIRIO & TRAPE 2012
Mochlus fernandi harlani — FREITAS et al. 2019 (by implication)
|Distribution||Equatorial Guinea (Bioko Island), Cameroon (e.g. Böhme 1975; Lawson 1993), Nigeria (Dunger 1973), Gabon (ZFMK 26925)], Congo (Brazzaville)|
harlani: Sierra Leone (Zug 1983), Guinea (Conakry) (Angel et al. 1954), Liberia (Grandison 1956), Ivory Coast (ZFMK 76711; MNHG 1228.005–015), Ghana (ZFMK 83614-628). Probably in Nigeria, Togo; Type locality: Liberia.
nigripes: Type locality: Gold Coast.
Type locality: Bioko, Äquatorial-Guinea (see comment).
|Types||Neotype: ZFMK 9362, San Carlos, Fernando Poo (today Bioko Island), Equatorial Guinea, leg. M. Eisentraut, 15.X.1962.|
Holotype: ANSP 9540; Liberia [harlani]
|Diagnosis||Diagnosis (genus Lepidothyris Cope, 1892). Nostril pierced in the nasal; palatine bones in contact on the median line of the palate; ear opening present, tympanum more or less deeply sunk, not concealed and visible; pterygoids in contact medially, the palatal notch not extending anteriorly to between the centre of the eyes; eyelids moveable, lower eyelid scaly; digits with non–retractile claws; supranasal plates present; two frontoparietal scales; limbs strong but stout. |
From the other related genera Lepidothyris differs as follows: from Lygosoma in having the ear opening present; and the tympanum visible; from Riopa in having a lower scaly eyelid; and in lacking a transparent disc; from Mochlus in having strong and stout limbs; instead partly reduced or very short limbs.
Diagnosis: Lepidothyris fernandi fernandi is a large skink, with a short but wide head and a rounded snout; eye relatively large with a round pupil; ear opening more or less oval and well visible, without lobuli; body stout and subcylindrical; four limbs, relatively short but strong, with five thin toes; tail just as stout as the body, about half of the total length and tapering smoothly, and despite its apparent stoutness easy to autotomize; body scales strongly keeled, with three keels on the dorsal scales up to five keels on the lateral scales; there are between 31 and 34 scale rows around midbody.
Diagnosis [harlani]: Differs from the nominat form in having more scales around midbody, invariably 34 instead of 31 to 34; head only sparsely set off from body, shorter than in nominate form; and in the very different colouration.
|Comment||Distribution: not in East Africa (i.e. Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi fide S. Spawls, pers. comm., 28 June 2018). East African populations are L. hinkeli. Specimens of this species from Musosa, on the Zambian border to Zaire midway between Lakes Tanganyika and Mweru, have been collected by H.J. Bredo in 1939 (Witte 1953). There are no other records from Shaba Province. Broadley (1998) stated that “it seems likely that these specimens were mislabelled”. |
Synonymy: Euprepis striatus HALLOWELL 1854 has been removed from the synonym of L. fernandi and revalidated to species status (now Lepidothyris striatus). Freitas et al. 2019 synonymized Lepidothyris with Mochlus.
Type Species: Tiliqua fernandi BURTON 1836 is the type species of the genus Lepidothyris COPE 1892. The original description of Lepidothyris by Cope (1892) is within a key of scincid genera without determining a type species. In accordance to Opinion 46 of the ICZN (1999), L. fernandi is the type species of this genus, because Cope (1900) eight years later first associated this taxon with Lepidothyris and so it became ipso facto the type by this subsequent designation (WAGNER et al. 2009).
The type locality fide Burton  is “apud Fernando Po”, now known as Bioko in Äquatorial-Guinea.
Max. total length: 37 cm (SVL/TL = 15 cm/20 cm).
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